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Banker's Toolbox Announces — ACQUISITION OF LOAN LOSS RESERVE POWERHOUSE, MAINSTREET TECHNOLOGIES
Banker's Toolbox, Inc., leaders in compliance solutions for financial institutions, announced the acquisition of Georgia-based MainStreet Technologies (MST). MST is an industry leader in the loan risk management space. This acquisition adds to a strong and growing portfolio of compliance-related solutions and will continue to enhance the value Banker's Toolbox brings to both their customers and the industry. (Read full press release here.)

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05/10/2019

FinCEN virtual currencies guidance and advisory

FinCEN has issued guidance document FIN-2019-G001, Application of FinCEN’s Regulation to Certain Business Models Involving Convertible Virtual Currencies (CVCs). The guidance is in response to questions raised by financial institutions, law enforcement, and regulators concerning the regulatory treatment of multiple variations of businesses dealing in CVCs.

FinCEN also issued an Advisory on Illicit Activity Involving Convertible Virtual Currency (FIN-2019-A002), to assist financial institutions in identifying and reporting suspicious activity related to criminal exploitation of CVCs for money laundering, sanctions evasion, and other illicit financing purposes. The advisory highlights prominent typologies, associated “red flags,” and identifies information that would be most valuable to law enforcement if contained in suspicious activity reports.

05/08/2019

CFPB proposes debt collection rules

On Tuesday, the CFPB issued a proposed rule to implement the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (FDCPA). The proposal would provide consumers with clear protections against harassment by debt collectors and straightforward options to address or dispute debts. Among other things, the NPRM would set clear, bright-line limits on the number of calls debt collectors may place to reach consumers on a weekly basis; clarify how collectors may communicate lawfully using newer technologies, such as voicemail, email and text messages, that have developed since the FDCPA's passage in 1977; and require collectors to provide additional information to consumers to help them identify debts and respond to collection attempts.

The proposal would amend Regulation F, which implements the FDCPA, to prescribe federal rules governing the activities of FDCPA-covered debt collectors. The proposal focuses on debt collection communications and disclosures and also addresses related practices by debt collectors. The Bureau also proposes that FDCPA-covered debt collectors comply with certain additional disclosure-related and record retention requirements. If a final rule is issued, the Bureau proposes that it would become effective one year after it has been published.

Comments on the Bureau's proposal will be accepted for 90 days following Federal Register publication.

05/02/2019

Treasury tech notice for users of OFAC site

The Treasury Department has posted an important Technical Notice for users of the OFAC website and sanctions lists data files. The existing certificate (expiring June 6, 2019) will be replaced on May 16, 2019 at 9 p.m. Please call this notice to the attention of your IT staff or your vendor if they download OFAC's sanctions list information.

05/01/2019

OCC seeks comments on proposed innovation program

The OCC has opened a 45-day public comment period on a proposed Innovation Pilot Program. The program would be voluntary and designed to provide eligible entities with regulatory input early in the testing of innovative activities that could present significant opportunities or benefits to consumers, businesses, financial institutions, and communities.

Entities eligible for the proposed program would be OCC-supervised financial institutions, including those engaging a third party to offer the innovative product, service, or process. Entities may propose a pilot individually or as a collaborative effort such as a consortium or utility. An FAQ regarding the Program was also posted.

Comments on the proposed program should be sent to pilotprogram@occ.treas.gov by June 14, 2019.

04/25/2019

SEC FinTech Forum agenda

The Securities and Exchange Commission has posted the agenda for its 2019 FinTech Forum. The forum, which will be hosted by the SEC's Strategic Hub for Innovation and Financial Technology (FinHub), will open at 9:30 a.m. ET, on May 31 at the SEC's headquarters in Washington, D.C., and is open to the public on a first-come, first-serve basis. No registration is required to attend the event.

04/25/2019

Payments improvement update

The Federal Reserve's FedPayments Improvement group has released its April 2019 progress report on Strategies for Improving the U.S. Payment System.

04/24/2019

OCC Innovation Office Hours in New York

The OCC will hold Innovation Office Hours, June 11–12, in New York to promote responsible innovation in the federal banking system. Office Hours are one-on-one meetings with OCC officials to discuss financial technology (fintech), new products or services, partnering with a bank or fintech company, or other matters related to responsible innovation in the federal banking system. OCC staff will provide feedback and respond to questions. Each meeting will last no longer than one hour.

Interested parties should request an Office Hours session by May 3, 2019, and are asked to provide information on why they are interested in meeting with the OCC. Specific meeting times and arrangements will be determined after the OCC receives and accepts the request.

04/19/2019

Treasury and IRS plan to modernize business operations

A six-year plan to modernize IRS business operations has been released by Treasury and the IRS. The plan is organized around the following four “Modernization Pillars” critical to the IRS’s mission and future development:

  • Taxpayer Experience
  • Core Taxpayer Services and Enforcement
  • Modernized IRS Operation
  • Cybersecurity and Data Protection

04/17/2019

OFAC tech notice on sanctions lists data files

OFAC has posted a technical notice for users of its sanctions lists data files. On or about May 16, 2019, OFAC will be expanding the "Program" field found in OFAC’s legacy data files (DEL, PIP, FF, and CSV formats) from 50 to 200 characters. Updated data specification files for both the SDN and Consolidated Lists will also be published on May 16 as part of the update.

04/12/2019

OCC schedules Pittsburgh workshops

The OCC will host two workshops at the Hotel Indigo Pittsburgh East Liberty in Pittsburgh, May 21-22, for directors of national community banks and federal savings associations supervised by the OCC.

  • The Risk Governance: Improving Director Effectiveness workshop on May 21 provides practical information for directors to effectively measure and manage risks. The workshop also focuses on the OCC’s approach to risk-based supervision and major risks in the financial industry.
  • The Credit Risk: Directors Can Make a Difference workshop on May 22 focuses on credit risk within the loan portfolio and techniques for managing them, such as identifying trends and recognizing problems. The workshop also covers the roles of the board and management, how to stay informed of changes in credit risk, and how to effect change.
      Each workshop is limited to 35 registrants.

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